Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness”: An examination of the American Enlightenment and the extent of its influence in the founding of the United States of America (1727-1776)

Hopkinson, Alice (2021) Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness”: An examination of the American Enlightenment and the extent of its influence in the founding of the United States of America (1727-1776). Undergraduate thesis, University of Chichester.

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Abstract

As the United States of America approaches the 250 year anniversary of the Declaration of Independence’s passing, we as historians and observers of history are reminded of the poignancy of the document within the broader narrative of the American Revolution and as a product of an overlooked and underestimated intellectual movement.
The American Revolution is a fascinating topic for a number of reasons. Between 1765 and 1776 the American colonies underwent a drastic change in all aspects of their society that resulted in the foundation of a newly independent nation with a unique awareness of itself and of its place in the world. The cause of this change can be attributed to a developing relationship between the people of the nation and the ideas of the European Enlightenment. As an intellectual movement, the Enlightenment challenged the obtainment of knowledge through sources of power that arbitrarily retained such power at the expense of individual liberties. To see and to observe was to know in the Enlightenment world,1 as those virtuosi with a talent for intellectualism defined for themselves conceptions of good and bad, moral and immoral, democratic and despotic, in all aspects of society.

Item Type: Thesis (Undergraduate)
Additional Information: BA (Hons) History
Uncontrolled Keywords: America, Enlightenment, Liberty
Subjects: E History America > E151 United States (General)
Divisions: Departments > History
Undergraduate Dissertations
Depositing User: Gail Graffham
Date Deposited: 04 Aug 2021 08:29
Last Modified: 04 Aug 2021 08:29
URI: http://eprints.chi.ac.uk/id/eprint/5876

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